NPS Direct – October 2013

Published in NPS Direct

Date published: About this date

Acne and antibiotics

Don't ignore the risks of treating acne with
oral antibiotics

Oral antibiotics are a treatment option for acne but have greater potential for side effects than topical treatments. Learn how to individualise treatment and minimise side effects, long-term scarring and psychological distress associated with acne.

Di-Gesic and Doloxene

Di-Gesic and Doloxene to stay: what you need to know

After a lengthy sponsor appeal against the TGA's decision to cancel all dextropropoxyphene-containing analgesics from the ARTG, the Australian Administrative Tribunal has found that Di-Gesic and Doloxene should remain available in Australia subject to new prescribing conditions.

Consultation Snapshot

New to NPS Direct — Consultation Snapshot

This new series of articles looks at real patient problems commonly encountered in primary care and provides important practice points and information to tell your patients. In our inaugural article we look at stopping statins in older people.


Fast five: Be Medicinewise Week 2013


What happens this week?

From 14 to 20 October is 'Be Medicinewise Week', when we encourage all Australians to become engaged with their health and have greater awareness about medicines and medical tests. Throughout the week we invite people to take a daily medicinewise challenge and access a range of online resources to help them make better health decisions.


What is being medicinewise?

A medicinewise person takes an active role in their healthcare and asks questions about their medicines and medical tests. As health professionals you can help your patients be medicinewise by putting into practice the principles of quality use of medicines.


How can you help your patients be medicinewise?

  • Advise them on how to manage their medicines safely and wisely.

  • Remind your patients about the importance of understanding their medicines.

  • Provide them with the tools and information they need to get the most out of their medicines.

  • View the steps to become medicinewise


Support older Australians to become wiser

Focusing on the health of Australia's ageing population is particularly important because older people usually need to take more medicines, and extra consideration is required for them to use medicines safely and wisely.


Manage medicines effectively

Many people are not aware of the active ingredients in their medicines or how they may interact with other prescription, non-prescription and complementary medicines. Encourage your patients to keep an up-to-date Medicines List to help them, and everyone involved in their healthcare, to
know about their medicines.


More from Health News and Evidence

Rotavirus vaccines: the benefits outweigh the risks

A new study commissioned by the TGA into rotavirus vaccine use in Australia has confirmed a small risk of intussusception, especially after the first dose. Does this affect national vaccine recommendations?

What you need to know about FDCs

A recent increase in fixed-dose combination prescription medicines has benefited patients through fewer co-payments, but what is the clinical rationale for switching patients to these medicines?

Atomoxetine warning follows child suicide

In light of the suicide of a 9-year-old boy and attempted suicide of two other children, remember to adequately inform parents and carers of the risk of suicidal ideation for children with ADHD treated with atomoxetine.


Earn CPD points

New online case study for GPs, pharmacists & nurses

Gain an edge in managing older patients with type 2 diabetes by working through an online clinical scenario based on a 75-year-old man, with evidence-based best-practice information.

  • Engaging, highly interactive, flexible online learning.
  • Immediate peer and expert feedback.
  • Accessible on computer and tablets — switch between devices seamlessly.

For pharmacists — promoting safe use of oral anticoagulants

Want to know more about the safe use of the new oral anticoagulants and how they compare with warfarin? Complete the latest Pharmacy Practice Review and earn 8 hours of Group 2 CPD points (16 credits).

Updated CVD Risk Clinical e-Audit for GPs — now available online

On completing this Clinical e-Audit nearly half of GPs changed their practice on the use of an absolute CVD risk tool when assessing patients and when advising lifestyle modification. This online version includes the latest Australian guidelines for the management of absolute CVD risk.


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Image credits:
Oral antibiotics and acne: Evgeny Atamanenko/
AAT decision on Di-Gesic and Doloxene: Regien Paassen/
Consultation snapshot: Alexander Raths/